An influx of students into Reynoldsburg City Schools has prompted the district to close off grades in some schools to new students.
About 466 new students have started attending Reynoldsburg schools since August, said district spokeswoman Valerie Wunder, far more than the district had planned on. Enrollment is up by 297 students, or 4.3 percent, since last school year.
Superintendent Melvin Brown posted a note on the district's website last week informing the community of the situation and reassuring parents that other school buildings have plenty of room to accommodate the students who are arriving.
Brown cited unusual residential growth in the district, saying: "It is a great problem to have! People are seeing the value of living and working in our wonderful community.
"However, as a result of this new growth and to accommodate for future growth this school year, some grade levels in some of our schools will be closed to new students including new residents. ... We will continue to provide transportation to students and are working proactively on solutions for next year as growth continues."
District enrollment is 7,264, up from the October 2016 enrollment of 6,967 students.
The schools adding the most students since last year are Rosehill Elementary School, with an increase of 57, or 18.6 percent; Waggoner Road Middle School, with 60, or 14.4 percent; and Hannah Ashton Middle School, with 66, or 12.6 percent.
Wunder said one source of the enrollment growth is the newer Reynolds Crossing development near East Broad Street and Lancaster Avenue.
Reynoldsburg Development Director Dan Havener said that since January 2016, Reynoldsburg has gained 11 single-family homes, one duplex and 24 multi-unit residences. He said residential development land in townships that is part of the school district has been pretty steady, with no big increase in residents.
The district includes land in Truro, Jefferson and Etna townships; however, John Carlisle, president of the Etna Township Board of Trustees, said there are no new developments there that would affect Reynoldsburg schools.
The Reynoldsburg district is one of the few in the Columbus area that allows students from other districts to enroll. This year, the district has 718 open-enrollment students, a handful more than last year's 709.
According to Ohio Department of Education data, 385 of those open-enrollment students come from Columbus City Schools, 108 from Groveport Madison, 48 from Licking Heights, 38 from Pickerington and 29 from Whitehall, with additional students coming from other districts.
District Treasurer Tammy Miller told ThisWeek Reynoldsburg News for an Oct. 30 article that allowing open enrollment has helped Reynoldsburg schools' finances and will earn it an estimated $4.2 million in 2018.